Mitt Romney sacrificed up to $2 billion to serve, first as CEO of the Salt Lake Winter Olympic Games, then as governor of Massachusetts, and now as presidential candidate. In each of those circumstances he either took a salary of $1 or he donated what he would have received to charity. For the Olympics, he not only gave up his salary, he and Ann donated $1 million to the cause. The games were going through hard times financially as a result of the bribery scandal, and donations were needed to help right the ship financially. To Mitt it was clear that he had to set the example if he was going to ask others to donate.
No doubt political opponents will downplay this assessment of his career, as I have written about previously, but the evidence is there. Anyone with any integrity will acknowledge that money is not what motivates Mitt. Indeed, I would argue that is clear that he does what he sees as his duty. Of course he is well off financially, and he can afford to do what he has done for the Olympics and in politics, but how many other servants of the public interest do we see cut from this particular cloth of service to others?
I picked up this story on Newsmax.com in a piece by editor Christopher Ruddy entitled, A Sacrifice of $2 Billion for America by Romney. There Ruddy wrote:
If you watched the media, you would think Romney is a greedy elitist. However, the three recent presidential debates showed the Republican presidential candidate to be a man passionately concerned about the future of America, and determined to do something about it.
But the true level of Romney’s passion about this country are in the numbers — his personal financial numbers, that is.
Ruddy cites an article in Forbes by Nathan Vardi entitled, Mitt Romney: The Most Expensive Political Career in American History: “Lots of people pay a high price for getting into politics, but no one has likely given up more, at least financially, than Mitt Romney.” That piece, also worth reading, cites another analysis done by Bloomberg that came up with similar results. The second piece, however, can’t resist the temptation to detail the Democrats’ populist complaint’s about Mitt’s wealth. Nevertheless, it at least points out Mitt’s charitable efforts over the years.
The bottom line here is to say, sure, Mitt has made a lot of money, but his willingness to leave it all aside, even as early as 1994 when he ran against Ted Kennedy, speaks volumes about who he is as a person. As Ruddy wrote, his success “goes to show that not only is would-be president Mitt Romney an experienced businessman, he’s a very good one as well.”
Recent changes in the polls in Mitt’s favor seem to indicate that the more Americans see of Mitt, the more they are convinced that he is the man the country needs elect as its president.